Cataracts are a common eye condition characterized by a progressive opacification of the crystalline lens, the natural eye lens. This opacity disrupts light transmission through the eye, resulting in reduced vision. The risk of developing cataracts increases significantly with age. Most cases of cataracts are linked to aging, with an increasing prevalence after age 60.

According to statistics, around half of all people aged between 65 and 75 show signs of cataract. This proportion rises to 70% in people over 75. These figures reveal the scale of the public health problem represented by cataracts, particularly in ageing populations.

In addition to aging, other factors can contribute to the development of cataracts. Exposure to ultraviolet rays, ocular trauma, certain systemic diseases such as diabetes, and long-term use of certain medications can also increase the risk of developing cataracts.

Cataract symptoms can vary from person to person but often include blurred or cloudy vision, increased sensitivity to light, halos around light sources, difficulty perceiving colours and frequent changes in eyeglass prescription. These symptoms can significantly impact the quality of life and daily activities such as driving, reading and seeing at a distance or up close. 

The decision to opt for cataract surgery generally depends on the extent of symptoms and their impact on daily activities. Cataract surgery, also known as phacorefractive surgery, is a safe and effective procedure involving the removal of the opacified lens and its replacement with an intraocular implant. With technological advances, this surgery has become commonplace and presents a low risk of complications.

It is advisable to consult an optometrist as soon as symptoms appear to enable early detection and appropriate management.

Regular follow-up with your optometrist is essential to monitor the evolution of cataracts and determine the optimum time to consider surgery.

By taking preventive measures such as protection against ultraviolet rays and good management of underlying diseases, it is possible to reduce the risk of developing cataracts and preserve long-term eye health.